The average cost of a conclusive COVID-19 test could go down considerably through pool testing, which could be a "game changer," allowing more people to be screened, Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said Wednesday.
In an interview with CNN Philippines, Roque said a single RT-PCR or reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction test kit can actually be used for 10 to 20 persons through pool or batch testing. This essentially cuts the testing cost per person to P300.
"Pool testing will expand our actual testing to at least times 10 become the minimum of the pool that they're considering," he said. "Right now it's 10, but there’s a possibility that it could be as high as 20."
Basically, a negative result will clear the entire group, while positive findings will subject them to further and/or individual testing.
Recently, Testing Czar Vince Dizon said pool testing in Metro Manila was awaiting approval from the Department of Health. He said it would be done only in virus hotspots, not in the entire country.